ANYBODY buying Irish art right now is getting very good value for money according to John de Vere White. de Vere’s art auctions brought in around 480,000 with their 220 lot Irish art sale on September 28. Just under 60 per cent of works on offer sold by lot, over 90 per cent sold by value. This means that all the most expensively estimated works found buyers.
The top lot was a Patrick Collins oil from 1969, A memory of W.B. Yeats walking in Dublin, which made a hammer price of 29,000. A portrait by Dan O’Neill entitled Louise made 18,000 and a work by Donald Teskey made 6,000. All these paintings would have sold for far more money than this two years ago. Kestrel by Edward McGuire sold for 17,500 and Michael Cullen’s Mother and Child Sleeping made 8,700. A bronze by F.E. McWilliam, Standing Couple, made 10,200 as did Markey Robinson’s Amsterdam.
In a Cork art sale that brought in 275,000 including fees, where 64 per cent of lots on offer found buyers, the top works failed to sell. Nonethless auctioneer Morgan O’Driscoll was happy with the results of his Irish Art sale in Cork on September 27. The market took the view that the top lots, two horse paintings by Peter Curling, were over estimated at 50,000-60,000 each. (See antiquesandartireland.com post for September 19). Around 30,000 would have been more realistic in the current climate. In the event each one was bid up to 24,000 before being withdrawn.